With eyes on US Open, Novak Djokovic ‘can envisage’ 2021 calendar Grand Slam sweep



LONDON: Novak Djokovic fell on his back, picked himself up and said he can envisage completing the Grand Slam sweep this year with the US Open.

The 34-year-old Serb had shown all his battling qualities and mental strength to come from a set down and beat Matteo Berrettini 6-7 (4/7), 6-4, 6-4, 6-3 for a record equalling 20th Grand Slam and sixth Wimbledon crown on Sunday.


He joins great rivals Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal on 20 majors.

It also kept him on course to become only the third man to complete the calendar Slam after Don Budge (1938) and Rod Laver (1962 and 1969).

“I could definitely envisage that happening and I hope I will give it a shot,” said Djokovic after receiving the trophy.


“I’m in great form and played well and having my best form at Grand Slams is my number one priority.”

Djokovic paid a handsome tribute to Federer — who went out in the qurter-finals — and Nadal, who did not play so he could prolong his career. 

“It means none of us three will stop!” he joked about all three being tied on 20.


“I have to make a great tribute to Rafa and Roger, they are legends of our sport and the two most important players I ever faced in my career.

“They are the reason why I am where I am today.

“They showed me what I needed to do to get stronger, physically, tactically and mentally.


“Over the last 10 years it has been an incredible journey that’s not stopping here.”

Djokovic seems like the unstoppable one of the three with Federer having had two knee operations and Nadal also showing signs of wear and tear.

– ‘It is the beginning’ –


Whether Berrettini can pose further problems down the line only time will tell but he certainly caused a few for Djokovic on Sunday.

The amiable Italian — the first player from his country to reach a Wimbledon singles final — made a good fist of becoming Italy’s first male Slam winner since Adriano Panatta at the 1976 French Open.   

He clearly had the majority of the 15,000 capacity crowd on his side which at times appeared to irk Djokovic.


The Serb, though, embraced Berrettini warmly at the net and then paid him many compliments labelling him the ‘Italian Hammer’ for the strength of his serve.

“It was more than a battle. First of all huge congratulations to Matteo for his team on a great tournament and a tough match today.

“It’s not the best feeling losing in the final but there’s a great career ahead of you and as he says, it’s just the beginning.”


Djokovic said he may have been holding the trophy for the sixth time but he is always taken back to when he was dreaming he had won Wimbledon.  

“As a seven-year-old I was constructing a trophy with improvised materials that I could find in my room so to come here and for this, it is amazing,” he said.

“Winning Wimbledon was always the big dream of mine when I was a kid and I have to remind myself how special this is and to not take this for granted,” said Djokovic.


“It’s a huge honour and a privilege.”

Berrettini won many new fans during the fortnight and his graciousness shone through again after the loss.   

“Novak is a great champion he is writing history on this court,” he said.


“It is not the end it is the beginning for me.”

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